Expert Advice on How to Trim a Palm Tree

Palm trees add an exquisite touch of paradise to any landscape. Since palm trees radiate such joy, we should give them the ideal care. The thing about palm trees is that they do not need regular trimming because they are monocots. Monocots do not have a continued development in their trunks like a common tree where new wood is being made. 

A Palm tree has a trunk which may seem to develop like a tree but it is an extension of the tissue initially formed. Basically, palm trees don't grow externally in their trunks and grow one leaf at a time. This is the reason it is fundamental to take proper care when pruning or trimming. However, the palm trees actually "prune" themselves and shed the dead fronds when the new leaves come while the older fronds are lost and eventually fall off. This is not good news for owners who may have a glass house, benches or flower beds beneath. 

Pruning or trimming a palm tree requires carefulness and planning before coming at it with a couple of cutters and pruners. Not following appropriate instructions and rules could destroy your palm tree. To guarantee your tree is kept in its best condition continue reading to learn how to trim palm trees like an expert. 

When and why a palm tree should be trimmed: 

Before we talk about how to trim palm trees, it is important to know when and why you should do it. Palms distend out so as to shield themselves from strong breezes forming a cantilever effect. Those develop fronds are there as they should be. 

If you end up trimming an excessive number of the developed fronds before the more youthful ones have an opportunity to develop, the high breezes could tear them off, subsequently harming the palm and restrain its growth. Those developed fronds are there to ensure the wellbeing of the more youthful ones. 

The plant knows the number of fronds it needs and how tall they have to be in order to produce more. It realizes that if the main frond is dying, at that point it ought to produce another one. The plant itself knows precisely when to shed off a dead fond and when to start growing another one. 

Trimming the plant for landscape reasons isn't the best thought. You risk harming the palm to an unrecoverable extent. In any case, it is vital that you know the reason why and when to trim your palm tree. 

Give your plant a chance to live to a ready seniority, and not pass on as a result of thoughtlessness. Palm trees require just to be trimmed when the most developed fronds on the tree have turned a dark color, dry or dead. As palm trees develop, new fronds are framed each year and the most grown fronds pass on. Therefore, normal trimming should not be required more than once every year. Do not over trim, rather trim just what is dead. 

Here are the benefits of trimming palm trees and some reasons why it is recommended:

  •  Recognize tree issues
  • Anticipate damage
  • It keeps your trees healthy.
  •  Trimming your palm tree is cost effective.
  • leaf
    Trimming expands sun exposure and the flow of air all through the tree, even to the hidden leaves and fronds, enhancing their well-being. 
  • leaf
    Trimming helps in the worth of your landscape.
  • leaf
    Trimming palm trees can improve the production of new fronds

Things you will need:

•    Pruning clippers (​Electric If Time is Issue)

•    Pole Saw

•    Portable garden stairs/ladder

•    Utility knife/pruning knife

•    Long sleeved shirt

•    Disinfectant

•    Gardening gloves

•    Green-waste trash can

•    Hard hat

•    Safety glasses

Extra: Bug killer aerosol


1. Be mindful of pruning knives when you use them. Keep in mind to close the blade after you are done your task. 

2. If you are hypersensitive to ants, insects and honey bees then you should be cautious.

3. Do not forget to wear gloves because palm tree leaves have individual thorns or needles.

4. Exercise caution when pruning close to utility lines. Trees that touch these wires can cause fire and security perils, and could also cause power blackouts.

5. Abstain from making a hole in the trunk of a palm tree as it is permanent and enables pathogens to enter.

Step by step instructions to trim a palm tree:

1.    Inspect and examine the tree

First of all investigate the palm tree. Comprehend what kind of palm tree you have before you start trimming, as palms are self-pruning plants and can really be harmed by pruning. As you survey the tree, figure out where you will begin and what tools you will require. 

Pro Tip: Be mindful, potassium deficiency can cause pale leaves in palm trees. It is essential to redress this insufficiency instead of simply pruning the withering parts. Not tending to the issue will inevitably prompt the decay of the palm.

2.    Prepare equipment and tools 

Knives, blades, and pruners are generally the best decision for devices for this kind of work. Ensure every one of them is sharp as you begin so you have perfect and precise grazes that will limit the harm to the tree. Safety gear is an absolute necessity when trimming a palm tree, and additionally a long-sleeved shirt and thick jeans. 

In the event that there are a large amount of bugs in the area, keep a can of bug killer aerosol at hand. Palm trees are a great place for ants, bugs, spiders and other small insects to live. Along these lines, on the off chance that you intend to trim your palm tree's leaves, be watchful for such creatures.

Pro Tip: Pruning tools and instruments can spread disease beginning with one tree then onto the following. The greater part of your trimming gadgets should be purified using a disinfectant before you begin trimming your tree.

3.    Prepare the stairs

The compact garden stairs should be placed at an incline towards the tree. Thoroughly check the feet of the ladder and adjust. Utilize the ladder or portable garden stairs to get to different spots of the tree that look as though they may need trimming. While moving your stairs take additional care to not harm the trunk of the palm tree. A harmed trunk may not totally recuperate and the injury will leave the tree helpless to diseases and insects. 

4.    Begin trimming 

According to the experts, the ideal time to trim palm trees is during the spring season. Separating the dead leaves on the tree over the mid-year and winter season is advantageous and shields the palm tree from late spring sun and winter chill. 

Put on gardening gloves and safety glasses. At that point, carefully search the zones of the palm which seem to be undesirable, searching for anything that will fall off easily. In the event that something comes from the tree with a basic pull, it is dead and should be gotten rid of. With the help of pruners, saw or knife, expel get rid of any remaining dead fronds that are obviously undesirable and dangling low. In the event that the fronds are parched, darker or infected, they ought to be trimmed off. 

Try not to trim any of the solid leaves inside the leaf bundle at the highest point of the palm tree. Also avoid all leaves that are developing upright or parallel to the surface. As soon as you are done the leaves should shape a half hover at the highest point of the palm tree.

Pro Tip: Over trimming a palm tree can lead to narrowing the trunk. This will make the palm more vulnerable to breaking during strong winds. 

5.    Look for the final touches

Since you have carried out the full trimming process, take a step back and survey the palm tree so as to check whether you missed any spots. Trimming could result in a futile exertion if you omit something vital. Lastly, put your tools away, tidy up the palm leaves and appreciate the new well-groomed appearance of the palm tree.

Young man trimming and landscaping trees with shears.


It wouldn’t be wrong to say that palm trees are generally low maintenance plants. Most species never at any point should be pruned at all. Be that as it may, some species are often used to enhance landscapes. These palm trees should be well kept and properly maintained. Trimming palm trees is however sometimes very necessary and if done appropriately and reasonably can leave the palms looking alluring and also solid. Just make sure you have the right equipment like, at a minimal a solid pole saw will help you keep the palms somewhat looking good.

Numerous palms can live more than 100 years, however, their lives can undoubtedly be 'cut off' by messy or harmful pruning. Trimming correctly and during the right season will keep your palm trees healthy, provided that you are working with quality tools and a delicate touch. We hope you enjoyed this guide to trimming your palm trees like an expert. Remember, be cautious and follow the instructions mentioned above carefully. If your looking for a pole saw please check out our buying guide or reviews.